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Gawker Stalker map conclusion

So.   I have been digging and I will share with the class what I’ve found.  Thanks to archive.org, a site that basically archives the entire internet and lets you search in the “wayback” machine, I now know that the map was online from April 11, 2006 through July 31, 2008.

The Wayback Machine shows you archives of web pages.

Harris also told me that he asked someone he knows who works at Gawker about the map, and they flatly denied any existence of the map at all.  Hah!  I was also able to see what gawker.com/stalker USED to look like.  (These days it redirects to gawker.com/tag/stalker):

Please note that this image is from archive.org and the small image of the map and the red text was added by me in Photoshop.

As I mentioned in a previous post, George Clooney had a well publicized campaign against Gawker by encouraging people to post fake sightings and flooding their system.  Although I can’t find anything that specifically states where the map went, I would bet that legal action was taken against Gawker.  Clooney and other celebs clearly felt that it was an invasion of their privacy to have their locations broadcast against their own will.

Stalker map no more?

So, no matter where I look, I can only find archived images of the stalker map (see above).  The link that is in archived articles is gawker.com/stalker – but when I go there, it redirects to gawker.com/tag/stalker, which is just a  list of  people’s tips.

I’ve searched archives of news, the Gawker site, everywhere I can think of basically, and I can’t find the map!  This leads me to several questions, of course.  Have they taken it down?  If so, why wasn’t there any press about it at all?  If it’s somewhere and I just can’t find it, then it is really, really well hidden.  George Clooney’s very public fight with Gawker is well publicized, so maybe enough celebrities complained it was a violation of privacy and they nixed the map?  I will continue hunting…  As Mushon mentioned in his comment on my “ask a question” post, the thing about the stalker map is that when celebrities (or anyone, really) are walking down the street they COULD tweet about where they are, or play foursquare, or otherwise disclose their location – but they don’t always choose to.  If someone else reveals their location, that’s another story.

Stalker!

Many of you may have heard of a website called Gawker.  Gawker is an NYC-based blog that is focused primarily on media and celebrity news/gossip.  Gawker has a feature called Gawker Stalker – which as you might guess from the title, is a map (of course, it’s a Google map) showing a combination of all the celebrity sightings that people have seen and tipped off the Gawker people.

Obviously there have been a lot of privacy issues as a result of this site, especially with the large amount of people out there with smartphones that can email Gawker from wherever they are.

I know that YouTube is not allowed but since I have seen others break the rule I guess I will too, but only for the class’ benefit.  This is a great clip of late night host Jimmy Kimmel taking on Emily Gould, the former editor of the site on how dangerous the Stalker feature can be.

YouTube Preview Image

And here is a fascinating New York Times article that Emily herself wrote talking about the impact working at Gawker had on her personal and professional life.

So, I am interested in pursuing the Gawker Stalker to see how/if any of the other local social media tools that others have mentioned (FourSquare, Twitter local) are interrelated.  Lots of celebrities are on twitter and may be disclosing their location anyway.  Class, do any of you read/tip off the Gawker Stalker?  Do you think this is a good idea for the next travelogue?